Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Potato Leek Gratin, and Liam

Hey, Liam, what do you think about having a potato and leek gratin with Thanksgiving dinner at my house?

Okay, great! I've experimented with this recipe a few times and finally have it down-pat. It gets a little weird when I use a turkey baster to limit the runniness and increase the flavor, but just trust me. What do you think?

Alright, settled then! I promise that it's one of the tastiest, coziest dishes you can imagine for fall. So I'll see you and your brother Lucas tomorrow night... and we'll cook up a storm together on Thursday. How does that sound?

Potato Leek Gratin
Liberally adapted from The Beekman Boys

I've added and subtracted some ingredients from the original incarnation of this recipe, which was too soupy. Rather than reducing the amount of cream and milk - because oh how they add so much deliciousness - I've employed a basting method at the end that takes liquid from the bottom of the dish and spreads it back on top. Complicated, maybe - but absolutely delicious, I assure you. This reheats like a dream for leftovers.

  • 3 pounds small potatoes (such as red russet or Yukon gold), sliced 1/6-inch thick
  • 5 medium leeks, white and light-green parts only, halved lengthwise and sliced to 1/8-inch thick
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for buttering dish
  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/2-cup panko, plus more for dusting
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4-cup chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
  • Salt
  • I use my food processor to make quick work of the potatoes and leeks, using the widest slicer setting for the potatoes and one two notches lower for the leeks.
  • Preheat oven to 375 F. In a large pot of salted boiling water, parboil the sliced potatoes for 5 minutes. Drain potatoes well and set aside.
  • In a large skillet, heat butter over medium heat. Saute leeks and garlic until leeks are tender, about 7 minutes. Set aside and combine with the panko.
  • In a buttered 9x13-inch baking dish, arrange half of reserved potatoes in an overlapping pattern. Pour 1 cup cream and 1/2 cup milk over top and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Top with the reserved leek mixture and arrange the remaining potatoes.
  • Pour remaining cream and milk over potatoes and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Dust the top with few sprinkles of panko.
  • Bake until potatoes are tender and the top of the gratin is golden brown, about 60 minutes.
  • Take the dish out of the oven, and if you see obvious amounts of liquid on the bottom and on the sides of the gratin (I always do), carefully tip it to one side so that the remaining cream and milk gathers on one end. Use a turkey baster to gather the liquid and spread it back on top of the gratin. Cook for another 10 minutes, until the liquids are completely absorbed.
  • Garnish with fresh parsley.


  1. YUM! I will be making this promptly! When i read about the turkey baster in the begining I had a horrid vision of you squirting turkey juice in the gratin (for what reason I have no idea!) Glad it is free from turkey juice!

  2. Looks delicious. Totally my kind of dish. And your nephew is super cute. Happy holidays!

  3. Classically, fantastically, cute.

  4. Yum! I love cozy dishes like this. Definitely bookmarking this one.

  5. So so cute! How is it I'm just now seeing this!?!? And it really was deeelicious!


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